Indiana is the Only State to Have A Federal Monitor for Compliance with No Child Left Behind Waiver

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Over 40 states have received federal waivers pertaining to the No Child Left Behind Act. The states still have to have standardized testing as far as I know to be eligible for federal subsidies, but they can modify certain aspects of the testing program. Indiana is one of the states which has received a waiver. It is the only state in the country that is required to have a federal monitor to make sure that the provisions that have been approved in the waiver are being implemented properly. There has been friction between the Democratic State Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz and members of the State Board of Education. Republicans in the legislature say that if the relationship doesn't improve, they may move to strip Ritz of the ability to chair the State Board. Ritz must implement polices she disagrees with that were enacted under one-term Republican superindent Tony Bennett, who was investigated and may face further questions as to his order to change the state's grade of a private charter school in Indianapolis whose founder and financial backer was a heavy campaign contributor to Republican candidates from Indiana, especially Bennett himself. Ritz has indicated that she would prefer to scrap the whole school grading system that was started under Bennett. Some principals have objected to the low grades that their schools received when there were mitigating circumstances, such as adding middle school level students to a high school. Ritz also disagrees with the frequency and emphasis that is placed on standardized tests. I am not sure how much of that is required by state law, and how much comes from the No Child Left Behind agreement that Indiana has with the federal government. The school board members are Republican appointees. One of them has questioned whether Ritz will have the application to continue the No Child Left Behind waiver completed in time, but Ritz said that meeting the deadline will not be a problem. From what I have read, students will have to take two standardized tests next year, one of which is to meet federal requirements. The objective is to create a new test for future years. Part of the situation is that Indiana passed a law withdrawing from the Common Core standards program, and that decision affects standardized test content.

In a recent survey, Indiana was ranked as the 8th dumbest state. There are many uneducated, blue collar people who live in Indiana. The lack of education seems to lead to aggressive behavior, such as in traffic, selfishness, and poor verbal communication skills.

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Robindell
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

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After the shooting this week IN had a press release:

FORT WAYNE, IN—Explaining that his sole concern is serving and protecting his community, Fort Wayne police officer Vincent Turner told reporters Wednesday that he does not see any difference between black and light-skinned black suspects. “As an officer of the law, I am committed to administering justice swiftly and even-handedly, regardless of whether the suspect has dark skin or really dark skin,” said Turner, adding that he has no problem giving a full pat-down to any potential criminal or hauling them down to precinct headquarters in the back of his patrol car, even if they are more of a light mocha color. “When you’re responding to reports of gunshots fired, or sprinting down an alleyway, you’re not thinking about where the suspect falls on the spectrum of African-American skin tones—you’re thinking about doing your job. Heck, the guy could be a very dark-looking Latino, for all I care—I treat every one of them the same. He’s still just a suspect to me.” Turner added that his dedication to upholding the law stems from a belief that all local residents should be able to walk their streets without fear, whether they come from an affluent white neighborhood or a working-class white neighborhood.

O N I O N

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douglaslee
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

All I can say is, I feel so deeply sorry for anyone in the teaching profession these days; particularly those who really care about their students. And god help the next generation of young adults... nof fo mention our country, because who's gonna run it in thirty or forty years? - AIW

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Aliceinwonderland
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Mar. 10, 2011 9:42 am

Quoted by douglaslee, an IN press release states: "Turner added that his dedication to upholding the law stems from a belief that all local residents should be able to walk their streets without fear, whether they come from an affluent white neighborhood or a working-class white neighborhood." Now ain't that special. - AIW

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Aliceinwonderland
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Mar. 10, 2011 9:42 am

Why was it necessary for this cop to have mentioned this? Civil rights of citizens should not be taken for granted, but when someone goes out of his way to state how good and how fair-minded he is, you have to wonder about his purpose and motive in making the statement.

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Robindell
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

It's not all about the civil rights but to manage the system effectiveness sometimes they have to cross the line. Bad but they have "no other option ".

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Rjcollings
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Sep. 4, 2014 11:26 pm

The Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction, Glenda Ritz, is running for governor in the Democratic primary. Superintendent Ritz does not favor the Republican policies of using letter grades to rate schools, a well the use of school vouchers to allow students to attend private schools. Recently, there was a shakeup by Governor Mike Pense of the Indiana Board of Education. The Republican appointees to the state school board did not get along with and disagreed with Superintendent Ritz on matters of procedure. An effort on the part of the governor and Republican lawmakers to strip Ritz of her ability to chair the board meetings was scaled back. So far, Ritz has said that she is running for governor because of her opposition to the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act, in which some Republican mayors in Indiana and business people expressed their disagreement with the passage of a law that seemingly opened the door to discrimination against gays on the part of businesses on religious grounds. The governor had to go back and submit an addition to the law, saying that it will not be used for purposes of discrimination, but this did not satisfy critics. Ritz also cited her concern for improving education for running for governor. Her approach in being elected as the only current Democratic statewide official was grass roots and not in keeping with conventional politics. The previous Democratic candidate for governor, former State Representative and house speaker John Gregg announced that he is again running, and Senator Karen Tallian, an attorney from the Northwest region, also announced her candidacy, to provide a progressive alternative (to Gregg, who is considered to be a moderate).

In the meantime, the dean of the Indiana University School of Education wrote an op-ed piece in the Indianapolis Star saying that Republican policies do not treat teachers as the professionals that they are. The general assembly has not provided enough funding so that the pay being offered to teachers in the public schools is not competitive with what other potential fields that college students could take up would pay. Also, a new teacher credentially procedure allows college graduates who did not major in education to take a test in the area in which they majored which would then allow them to teach. The dean said that professional teachers have to take several courses in teacher education and also have to pass more than one academic test, including a final test on educational methodology, before they can become teachers. Enrollment in teacher education has dropped in Indiana because of the inadequate salaries and because it doesn't seem fair that people not meeting the requirements for an education degree and regular licensing for teachers can become teachers. Because these people did not study methods of pedagogy, educatonal philosphy, and child development, they often tend to drop out of teaching at even a higher rate than do professionally trained teachers. The future of education seems bleak if universities cannot attract the best possible students to go into teaching due to poor policies. The over-emphasis on standardized tests has also been cited by many teachers as a discouraging trend, because of the need to spend too much time teaching to the test, and because poor test scores can result from socioeconomic factors beyond the control of the school. Other educators say that success can be achieved even with students from poor families and neighborhoods.

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Robindell
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

There are people in my state and in all of the other states who don't believe that socioeconomic inequality is a topic that should be covered in social studies classes, even though it certain is a major part of American history. Economists from academia and government write about and discuss economic inequality. The problem is that many Americans are in denial about the existence of this problem, or have the simplistic, idiotic idea that all you should do is scapegoat anyone who is struggling or who makes less money than you do, because they listen to the ignorance of their parents growing up instead of being taught information about this topic by teachers in school. Robert Reich of the University of California titled his recent book, Saving Capitalism. He asks, should it be saved, or should it be left to die? It is not going anywhere, but if current trends continue, we will become more like a Third World country with a caste system.

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Robindell
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Voters vote for candidates who use scapegoating as justification for enacting deterimental policies. There are some Republicans such as Illinois Senator Mark Kirk who have said that they would absolutely not support and vote for Trump. Voters who are supporting Trump refuse to consider, let alone believe, that Trump engaged in deceptive and fraudulent business practices with his Trump University. They gloss over and ignore his many belligerent comments which are based on caricatures and sterotypes of various groups. When Trump speaks of someone, he often seems to define the person by ethnicity or religion rather than as an individual. His lack of knowledge on domestic and foreign policy areas has been pointed out by many commentators and journalists, and yet, Republican voters don't care. When interviewed, some have simply said that someone like Trump is needed to "shake things up." Why at this rather instable time in world affairs would someone want someone who is instable and sometimes inconsistent in his opinions? If it hadn't been Trump, it would have been someone else who wanted to help the rich and harm middle class, working class, and poor people. Belligerence toward one's fellow citizens mostly on the basis of a combination of selfishness and lies does not add up to an educated citizenry. History teachers in my view often gloss over topics such as the Holcaust or slavery, reconstruction, and then the civil rights movement. Both historical and present-day prejudice against other groups is not taught in a clear, detailed way. The existence of civil rights laws protecting various groups is not aequately explained to students in too many instances. Former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor has mentioned that civics classes have been dropped in many school districts across the country. If students come from a household where the parents are blue collar and relatively uneducated, the parents may have expressed some economic or historic inaccuracies and falsehoods at home. The schools have not been overly successful in overcoming the effects of poverty, and they often don't seem to be able to instill an objective examination of history and present-day society on students, especially those who grew up with orthodoxies put forward by parents.

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Robindell
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Trump - Dumb Luck or A Master Manipulator?

Thom plus logo Either it's an act of a master manipulator, or he has the best luck there is. Donald Trump wanted the Fed to lower interest rates, knowing that that would provide a solid and multi-year boost to the economy. But when Trump came into office, rates were already low and the Fed was not inclined to help.
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